Recently, German scientists have broken a new record in solar cell efficiency: 41.1%. It seems like the scientific world is in a continuous race towards more and more efficient harvesting of solar energy, but few use it at its maximum power.
The cell developed by the scientists from Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE is a triple layered cell made of Gallium-Indium-Phosphide, Gallium-Indium-Arsenide with a Germanium substrate and has an efficiency to transform sunlight into electricity of 41.1%. In order to claim their record, scientist concentrated the sunlight 454 times onto the surface of the cell. These new parts seem to be very efficient in countries that have a lot of direct sunlight.
“We want to make photovoltaics competitive with conventional methods of electricity production as soon as possible. With our new efficiency results, we have moved a big step further towards achieving this goal,” says Fraunhofer ISE Department Head Andreas Bett.
The new types of solar cells are more efficient than the traditional ones only by using concentrated solar power systems. But how will they perform in other traditional solar systems? Will they be as efficient as hoped?